22 Feb Organic Gardening with Children
I started attending the Northwest Flower & Garden Show with my mother, Rita, many years ago (before I had a house, let alone a garden).
Now I go with my daughter Clare. I enjoy searching out my favorite vendors and discovering new ones. Several years ago I bought a terrific trowel which was manufactured in Poland. This year I found one made in Montana by Fisher Blacksmithing (booth #2533).
Last year I ordered three raised beds from Orcaboard after I saw them at the show. But I am really excited about what I’ll be doing after the show this year!
Last spring my good friend, Martha, had a beautiful vegetable garden put in—something I’ve been struggling to do for some time. She told me all about Colin and his Seattle Urban Farm Company and how he helped her create a gorgeous edible garden. Colin has agreed to help me set up an organic garden in Mukilteo, complete with worm bins, rain barrels, and even columnar apple trees on our deck.
I am planning on doing some of the gardening with a small group of children and have been saving sturdy branches for sweet pea and sunflower houses as well as keeping an eye out for interesting seeds. In the past I have done cooking with children so I am delighted that we will be able to work with our own harvest — a little Chez Panisse in Mukilteo.
In addition to Colin’s “A Backyard Farm,” the two display gardens with the most ideas for me were Northwest Horticultural Society’s “Eat Your Vegetables! – Garden to Table” and Pacific Stone Company’s “Crush.” The NHS is offering demonstrations which I will try to see more of on Friday. “Crush” showed how just the right amount of stonework can enhance any pea patch to potager status.
Other great finds at this year’s show:
Franchi Old World Italian Seeds (booth #2210) – could I really grow basil like you can get in Cinque Terre?
RE Store Door – at last, something I can make with those 100-year-old solid wood doors I’ve been saving in my basement.
But my all-time favorite—and I might even have to buy it for my Dad—is the Birdhouse Spy Cam (booth #2346) He would no longer be frustrated late at night trying to see what the owl is doing out in the backyard.